Air Transportation Legislation

New legislation aims to prevent flight attendant fatigue

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Washington – A bill introduced by Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) would require airlines to provide flight attendants with at least 10 hours off between work shifts.

In a Sept. 30 press release, Blumenthal – a member of the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee – said that domestic flight attendants often are given as little as eight hours off between shifts, which includes time spent deplaning the aircraft, getting to a hotel from the airport, and reboarding the plane. Pilots are guaranteed 10 hours off between shifts.

The bill also would require flight attendants to be included in air carriers’ fatigue risk management plans, which currently apply only to pilots.

“Too often flight attendants are pushed to the brink, enduring grueling shifts in the sky with little time off for rest,” Blumenthal said in the release. “Flight attendants are the first responders when we fly, and we are all safer when they are confidently able to do their job. This commonsense bill would protect overworked flight attendants by requiring airlines to include flight attendants in their fatigue risk management plans and ensuring they get reasonable opportunities for rest. It’s time to restore some sanity to our skies.”

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